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Two legends of American sport join forces1973 Babe Ruth Original Painting by LeRoy Neiman. One need only refer to the Permanent Auction Archives of our website to witness the soaring trajectory of Neiman sales in recent years. While there's no question that the ninety-one year old artist's passing in June 2012 has fermented interest in Neiman's distinctive style, the trend owes far more to the greater shift in the American art market that has seen enormous gains in the commercial art of painters from Joseph Leyendecker to Gil Elvgren to Norman Rockwell. A new generation of art collectors has come to realize that the upturned noses of their predecessors toward such artists had been an error in need of correction, and that a commission for The Saturday Evening Post or the cover of a boxing program did not preclude a work's assignment under the heading of "Fine Art."
Neiman's ebullient impressionistic style has enjoyed decades of popularity among the general male population since his buddy Hugh Hefner gave him his start at Playboy, and he quickly became synonymous with sports art, creating program covers for Heavyweight Championship fights, the Indy 500 and the World Series. But we still find ourselves near the very beginning of his wider acceptance in the rarefied air of galleries from Soho to Beverly Hills, suggesting the real pricing boom is still around the corner.
Those believing that Neiman's path will mirror those of Rockwell and Elvgren willl see tremendous opportunity here, in this arresting study of our National Pastime's most decorated practitioner. All boxes for a quality Neiman are ticked here, from the peerless subject matter to the imposing dimensions (29x25") to the bold and unmistakable color palette. The oil on board is professionally framed to final dimensions of 35x31".
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2017 June 29 Premium Sportscard Catalog Auction - Dallas